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Topic Essay: Atheism

In: Religion Topics

Submitted By mackenziewade
Words 3271
Pages 14
Mackenzie Wade
Nielsen. Atheism. Waechtler. Encyclopedia Britannica: Atheism. Jan. 2013. Web. 6 Sept. 2014. ‹http://www.britannica.com.ezproxy1.lib.asu.edu/EBchecked/topic/40634/atheism› According to The Encyclopedia Britannica, predominantly written by Kai E. Nielsen, atheism, in general, is the assessment and denial of metaphysical beliefs in gods or spiritual beings. Nielsen states atheism, in its simplest form, is defined as an overall disbelief in or denial of godly or spiritual beliefs and beings, however, Nielsen clarifies that all atheists do not wholeheartedly or similarly reject the existence of said godly or spiritual beliefs and beings. Atheism branches into three major subcategories: fallibilistic atheism, aprioristic atheism, and dogmatic atheism. Fallibilistic atheists believe their knowledge and beliefs concerning godly or spiritual beings could be mistaken. Fallibilistic atheists are usually deemed as agnostics, however, they are distinguished by the fact they presently do not believe in any godly or spiritual being. They remain conscious they may, at some point in the future, be presented with evidence which may alter their beliefs. Fallibilistic atheists are often considered empiricists—those whom believe that knowledge comes only or primarily from sensory experience—for they need to be presented with clear evidence in order to believe in any godly or spiritual beings. Aprioristic atheists do not believe in any godly or spiritual being due to their logical interpretations. Aprioristic atheists reject the existence of any godly or spiritual being because they consider their existence to be incomprehensible and illogical. The existence of a godly or spiritual being, especially in the forms portrayed by popular religions, is unintelligible and ridiculous in the eyes of an aprioristic atheist. Aprioristic atheists do not necessarily derive their…...

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